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Faculty Handbook

The Faculty Handbook, effective August 5, 2021, supersedes the version dated November 18, 2020, and reflects updates to the section on Academic Freedom.

The previous version, dated November 18, 2020, reflects changes that were necessary in order to bring the University into compliance with Title IX of the Education Amendments of 1972. Specifically, these changes reflect the creation of a new Interim Policy on Title IX Sexual Harassment to comply with the Department of Education’s May 6, 2020 regulations implementing Title IX. This Handbook also reflects the creation of a new Policy on Institutional Equity, which represents a combination of the University’s previous Policy on Discrimination & Harassment and Policy on Sexual Misconduct..

The Faculty Handbook constitutes a description of the rights and responsibilities of membership in the faculty of Northwestern University. More complete treatments of many of the issues covered by this document are found in individual policy statements published by the University. If policies and procedures of schools or departments conflict with information in the Handbook, the statements concerning these policies in the Faculty Handbook take precedence.

For a description of the different types of faculty categories, visit the Faculty Categories page. If you are unable to find the information you are looking for, please contact us at

Previous Versions of the Faculty Handbook

Faculty Handbook, effective November 18, 2020 - August 4, 2021

Faculty Handbook, effective August 14, 2020 - November 17, 2020

Faculty Handbook, effective October 19, 2018 - August 13, 2020

Faculty Handbook, effective September 30, 2016 - October 18, 2018

Faculty Handbook, effective April 1, 2015 - September 29, 2016

Faculty Handbook , effective August, 2012 - March 31, 2015

Faculty Appeals Guidelines

The Faculty Appeals Panel Guidelines, effective September 1, 2018, govern faculty appeals of a denial of tenure, promotion, or reappointment by a Northwestern University School (Appeal) as set forth in the “Appeal Procedures” section of the Northwestern University Faculty Handbook. 

Previous Versions of the Faculty Appeals Guidelines

Faculty Appeals Guidelines, effective September 30, 2016 - August 31, 2018.

Faculty Appeals Guidelines, effective April 1, 2015 - September 29, 2016.

The University Faculty Reappointment Promotion Tenure Dismissal Appeals Panel (UFRPTDAP) Guidelines, effective 2004 - March 31, 2015.